It was back in June that I first heard about the idea of a manifesto for wildlife, to accompany a walk for wildlife in London. Chris Packham asked me if I wanted to be Minister for Farming (and I extended that to Food later) – how could I refuse? Especially after he reeled off a long list of people who I admire and declared his determination that the “cabinet” would be balanced for gender and include young and BAME representatives too.
The Manifesto covers a wide variety of topics – all of which are directly relevant to nature in the UK (and overseas.) Each contribution finishes with a set of proposals that if carried out would make a big difference to the plight of nature. It would be arrogant of me to say how good my bit is but I can say that I think the other contributions are excellent. There are also some excellent commentary snippets from other people with a great passion for nature and who are experts in their own fields.
It also doesn’t completely feel like a coincidence that the Manifesto has appeared almost 25 years after Biodiversity Challenge, which sought to do a similar thing, albeit in a much more traditional way. It’s good to see some of the key contributors to BC – Mark Avery and Carol Day, also making big contributions to the manifesto.
Please read the Manifesto. It is controversial. It is, dare I say, radical? But that’s where we are. Nature is disappearing fast from this country (as it is across the planet.) We need to take urgent action. The same old same old is not enough.
So please come along to the walk for wildlife on Saturday.
Who knows where this will go afterwards? It very much depends on how much of a groundswell of feeling it generates.
Chris has also set up a crowdfunder to help fund its the costs of the walk, which are substantial. Please contribute whatever you can.
Podcaster Charlie Moores from Lush Times has produced this podcast with each author reading their own section of the manifesto.